Of course storytelling isn't the only thing going on around here. It's still canning time. Applesauce, beets and salsa have been the recent additions to the cellar. I'm having to buy jars now, 6 dozen so far and the end not yet in sight. I swear I think they evaporate in the dishwater! Still to do: more apples and cider, the pears, more salsa and vegetable soup. Then I will be finished. This is the downhill slope for canning though, the major work is behind me and this is really more fun.
Then there is the cabin project. I need to get some photos posted, I know. My big computer has decided for some reason not to go online these days and it will be taking a vacation to the shop as soon as I finish taking all my documents and photos off of it. That's where the cabin photos are. But to update, Larry has about 75% or more of the logs in place. He'll need help getting three big ones up where they need to be, and then he will start on the roof. I had hoped we would have the roof on by the end of September but the current goal is the end of October. As long as it's done by winter, that's all we need. It can wait then until we have time and money at the same time (how rare is that!) to do the chinking and work on the interior.
I will be opening another booth in an antique mall in Spencer next week if all goes according to plan. I've been wanting to do this for a while but there hasn't been time and the new one in Marietta needed a lot of attention for a while. It's off and running very well now, and next week I can see some clear days so we'll focus on getting the Spencer booth in place. I am pleased with the way this little side business is going; another small income stream adds to our retirement income and that's a good thing.
I'm back to selling on eBay after taking the summer off for the most part. I'm doing some things a little differently, though, using more Buy It Now and free shipping. That means figuring pricing that includes enough to cover the shipping and still make a little money. It's been working very well--I listed 3 items Monday and all three are sold. I've cut down the listing fees by listing only when it's free and I am meeting eBay's new requirements for one day shipping and a return policy so I get a good reduction on their fees as well as a break on postage. It means staying on top of sales, which was so difficult in the summer when I was so busy. Now I'm home more it's doable. I've actually bought items at antique malls and resold them on eBay for a good profit! Sometimes dealers don't take time to look things up and that's when you can find a bargain--like the $10 candlesticks I sold for $100, the Heisey piece I bought for $3 and sold for 21, the pattern glass vase bought for $6 and sold for $30, etc. Those dealers probably made a profit when they sold to me so they're happy, I'm happy and my buyers are happy.
Even with all this busyness, we still have time for evenings by the firepit, junking and auction trips and visits with friends along with the routine household chores. When what you do is what you enjoy, it never feels like work.
Someone recently asked me, "so are you making as much money as you were when you were working?" The answer is heck no--we're living on about a third of my former income and yet we seem to be living as well now as we were then. Funny how that works, but I have always heard that people will manage on whatever money they have and it seems to be true. I suppose part of that is expectations; we didn't expect to take long trips or buy lots of new stuff (rarely do I buy anything new to tell the truth) but we didn't do those things when I was working anyway. Paying off our bills when I retired was a sound decision because now the biggest expenses we have are gasoline and health insurance, not mortgage and credit payments.
So that, as Paul Harvey used to say, is the rest of the story, with a few meandering thoughts along the way. Now, back to work to list a few things on eBay and get ready to head down to my uncle's assisted living place to tell stories.
Copyright 2012 Susanna Holstein. All rights reserved. No Republication or Redistribution Allowed without attribution to Susanna Holstein.